Real Madrid moved closer to qualifying for the UEFA Champions League group stage for the 25th consecutive season after defeating Shakhtar Donetsk 2-1 in Madrid.
Real Madrid were looking for a similar emphatic scoreline against Shakhtar Donetsk at the Santiago Bernabéu after a sensational 5-0 win away at the Ukrainian side in the reverse fixture.
After a frantic start from ‘Los Blancos,’ Alan Patrick came within inches of breaking the odds and giving the visitors the lead against the odds when his effort rattled off the post.
Following a slew of errors from the ‘Hirnyky’ defense, the hosts broke the deadlock in the 14th minute, securing their 1,000th European Cup goal.
Vinicius Jnior took advantage of a lapse in concentration and squared the ball to Karim Benzema, who tapped home the opener.
Despite the hosts coming close to adding a second goal, Shakhtar equalized just before halftime. A flighted ball resulted in a fantastic chested pass from Patrick, which was slammed home by Fernando, leaving Thibaut Courtois with no chance as the teams went into halftime level.
Roberto De Zerbi’s men were good value for their point heading into the second half, as they attempted to repeat their 3-2 victory over ‘Los Blancos’ in 2020.
However, Madrid struck again through the partnership of Vinicius and Benzema, when an intricate move allowed the Frenchman to slot home his second of the evening and give ‘Los Blancos’ all three points.Elche 1:2 Real Madrid: A brace from Vinicius Jr. pushes Ancelotti’s men to top La Liga
Carlo Ancelotti’s side extends their impressive record of six victories in nine home matches against Ukrainian opponents.
Regardless of the outcome, Shakhtar will leave Madrid with their heads held high after an impressive performance against the 13-time champions.